On SAGE Insight: The Geography of Gender Inequality in International Higher Education

From Journal of Studies in International Education

The internationalization of higher education results in 4.6 million students attending colleges and universities outside their home countries. In the United States and other countries, there is significant underrepresentation of women among inbound international higher education students. Gender equality in education cannot be achieved so long as women are underrepresented in participation in this important educational venue. In international highereducation, decision makers can better understand barriers to achieving international gender equality goals.

Although it is the largest destination country for international students, the United States has one of the lowest participation rates by women international higher education students. Its participation rate is lower than other English-speaking countries such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom. The United States also has a larger gender gap than many other countries that host large numbers of international students

Because the Institute of International Education does not currently collect gender data by country of origin, an alternative data source must be used. All international students in the United States must obtain a temporary visa. The Student and Exchange Visitor System (SEVIS) provides quarterly “SEVIS by the Numbers” data beginning in April 2014. Correlation analysis is the statistical method used in this research to assess the strength of association between potential causal factors and gender inequality in international education.

Gender equality in education remains a central international objective as set forth in the Sustainable Development Goals. Understanding gender inequality in international higher education may assist institutions and policy makers in developing programs to eliminate barriers to full participation by women. Given the many benefits of international education and its potential as a labor market differentiator women should participate at an equal rate to men in all host countries. Until gender disparities among international students are being addressed, the Sustainable Development Goals cannot be achieved. Read more…


Abstract


The internationalization of higher education results in 4.6 million students attending colleges and universities outside their home countries. In the United States and other countries, there is significant underrepresentation of women among inbound international higher education students. Gender equality in education cannot be achieved so long as women are underrepresented in participation in this important educational venue. To better understand the drivers of gender inequalities in international higher education, this study examines the low participation rate by women coming to the United States by comparing it with participation data for women coming to the United Kingdom and Germany. Gender participation rates from both source regions and countries vary by destination country. By exploring the geography of gender inequality in international higher education, decision makers can better understand barriers to achieving international gender equality goals.

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Article details

The Geography of Gender Inequality in International Higher Education
Robert M. Myers , Amy L. Griffin
First Published October 12, 2018 Research Article 
DOI: 10.1177/1028315318803763
From Journal of Studies in International Education

     
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